A vendor at a local boat show was passing around free samples of soda that tasted good! I stopped by the booth and found that it was a make-your-own soda machine. I noticed the same vendor at the Annapolis Powerboat Show and stopped for a more in depth look at the device. The system, as offered by SodaStream www.sodastreamusa.com/), consisted of a dispenser unit that contains a carbon dioxide cylinder, one liter bottles to contain the mixed soda and bottles of flavoring concentrate.
To produce soda, one of the bottles is filled to a mark with cold tap water and then screwed into the carbon dioxide dispenser. A button is then pushed to dispense the CO2 into the bottle. The level of carbonation is controlled buy the number of times the button is pushed. After the CO2 is dispensed, the bottle is removed and a capful of the flavoring concentrate is added.
The cylinder of CO2 is good for about 110 liters of soda, while a bottle of concentrate will produce over 12 liters of soda. The selection of concentrates is wide; everything from cola to energy drinks is available in either regular or diet versions. Refills for the CO2 cylinders are ordered on line and shipped by UPS. The same applies to the bottles of concentrates.
The cost per liter of soda works out to around $.30 a bottle. The best part, though, is the reduction a soda cans and bottles to be disposed of, there aren’t any! On longer cruises, the soda machine itself goes on board. On day trips, I just take the one liter bottles in the cooler. Satisfied customer? You bet!
The guts of the soda maker, showing the CO2 cylinder and the actuating button on top. Newer models may look slightly different.
One liter of cold tap water and a cap full of concentrate makes one liter of soda. The concentrate bottle cap acts as the measure.
A one liter soda bottle ready to inject CO2.